The president of Cayuga Community College, in Auburn, N.Y., was the subject of a no-confidence resolution approved by three of the college’s four unions last week, but he still has the full support of the institution’s Board of Trustees, The Citizen, a local newspaper, reports. The trustees expressed their support for the president, Daniel P. Larson, in a written statement released after a special meeting on Monday night.
The college and the unions have been negotiating for months over contract revisions the institution is seeking to make up for a spending deficit of $1.5-million. The no-confidence votes were announced on Thursday by the Faculty Association and the bargaining units that represent administrative professionals and educational-support professionals. The latter two of those groups, along with the maintenance unit, have accepted contract revisions that would have employees take two to 10 unpaid furlough days, with the money to be repaid in later years. The college and the Faculty Association, however, are still at odds.
After Monday’s meeting, the board also released a statement saying that because the negotiations between the the college and the Faculty Association were at an impasse, “we therefore will be pursuing financial relief through other means to address our budget shortfall.” Those means, according to a release cited by The Citizen, include increasing efforts to receive a loan and “right-sizing our staffing.”
Betsy Palmer, an associate professor of education at Montana State University at Bozeman, died on Monday as a result of injuries sustained in a landslide while leading a group of 16 students on a study trip in Nepal, university officials announced. No students were injured. The university said it was working with the U.S. Embassy, the office of U.S. Sen. Max Baucus, and officials in Nepal to expedite the students’ return to the United States.
Ms. Palmer had deep roots in Nepal. She had spent the 2011-12 academic year conducting research there, and she had met her future husband there during a previous visit, in 2005. The study trip was part of a course offered through the University Honors Program on education and economic development in remote areas. It culminated in an extended trek to a remote village in the Arun River Valley, in the Himalayas.
Students at California community colleges could see additional class options for the shorter summer and winter sessions under a bill that passed the State Assembly on Monday, but those courses would come with a higher price tag. According to a report by the Associated Press, the measure, AB 955, would let colleges offer certain high-demand courses at nonresident tuition rates of about $200 per unit, compared with the in-state rate of $46 a unit. The bill now heads to the State Senate.
The bill’s author, Assemblyman Das Williams, a Democrat, said the measure would help students who have been shut out of classes they need to complete their degrees. Responding to one objection raised by some fellow Democrats, he said: “If you fear a two-tiered system, I’ve got to wake you up: It’s already here. There’s one tier that can get in, and one tier that is locked out.”
The bill is similar to a proposal that Santa Monica College considered last year but withdrew amid widespread opposition from faculty and students.
Three medical researchers at New York University have been charged with commercial bribery for allegedly trading information about their magnetic-resonance-imaging research for payments from a Chinese company, according to The Wall Street Journal and a news release by federal prosecutors.
The U.S. attorney’s office in Manhattan said in the news release that two of the researchers, Yudong Zhu and Xing Yang, were arrested on Sunday. The third, Ye Li, was believed to have flown to China before charges could be brought. All three were charged with one count of commercial bribery. Mr. Zhu, an associate professor of radiology, was also charged with falsifying records in connection with a National Institutes of Health grant that financed the research. The three were accused of concealing ties to a Chinese medical-imaging company and a research institute sponsored by the Chinese government.
A spokesman for NYU’s Langone Medical Center said the institution was “deeply disappointed” by the researchers’ alleged misconduct. He said the university became aware of possible irregularities in the research, and notified prosecutors after conducting its own investigation. He said the three researchers had been suspended and added that the university was continuing to cooperate with the investigation.
Lawyers for Mr. Zhu and Mr. Yang did not respond to the newspaper’s requests for comment.
President Miloš Zeman of the Czech Republic is drawing criticism for refusing to grant one of his critics a university professorship, after hinting that he objected to the scholar’s gay-rights activism. Martin C. Putna, a literary historian at Charles University, in Prague, supported Mr. Zeman’s rival in the January presidential election. According to Radio Prague, Mr. Zeman said he respected Mr. Putna’s sexual orientation but took issue with a sign Mr. Putna carried in a 2011 gay-pride parade. Czech presidents customarily appoint the country’s professors after they are nominated by their universities, in a process that is usually a formality.
A long-running research experiment at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that explores nuclear fusion as a possible source of energy will close after a series of cuts in its federal financing, resulting in layoffs for 70 employees unless Congress moves to avert the shutdown. The closure will leave two fusion experiments in the United States. The U.S. Department of Energy is increasing its support of fusion research, though money is being shifted to an international project, known as ITER, that is being built in France. Another fusion-energy experiment, at Princeton University, was terminated in 2008.
Republicans in the Ohio House of Representatives have included an amendment in the state budget, now under consideration in the State Senate, that would make students eligible for in-state tuition rates if universities continue to provide them with documents that allow them to register to vote in Ohio. Supporters of the proposal say it seeks to streamline the varied standards for tuition and voting. But critics say the provision is designed to penalize universities that make it easier for students to vote, since students traditionally vote disproportionately for Democratic candidates. A group that opposes the amendment said the proposal would cost the state’s public universities millions of dollars in tuition revenue.
Hyung-il Jung, a lecturer in the University of Central Florida’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management, has been cleared to return to teaching after being placed on leave last month over a reference to a “killing spree” that he made while talking with students. Mr. Jung expressed regret for the remark and characterized it as a joke. But the university said the remark was not acceptable, in light of a recent incident in which a former student killed himself before carrying out what the police think was a planned attack on the campus.
Willie J. Gilchrist, chancellor of Elizabeth City State University, in North Carolina, announced on Friday that he was stepping down and planned to retire, amid an inquiry by state investigators into allegations of witness intimidation and obstruction of justice against the campus police department, according to The Virginian-Pilot.
The police department in Elizabeth City discovered that more than 100 reports of crimes at the university going back to 2007 had never been investigated by the campus police, a backlog that included several reports of sexual assault. The newspaper reported that the campus’s police chief of 10 years resigned on May 10 in the wake of a sexual assault that had been reported last month in one of the university’s dormitories.
The State Bureau of Investigation’s inquiry came about after a university employee was arrested. At the institution’s request, the city’s police department agreed to send off-duty officers to help with campus security.
“While I am grateful for the opportunity to have served over the last seven years, I am eagerly anticipating and look forward to spending more time with my family, along with the other opportunities that retirement will bring,” Mr. Gilchrist said in a written statement.
The pool of college graduates who earned degrees in the 2007-8 academic year was considerably less diverse than the overall student body, and that finding presents challenges for colleges because more and more individuals seeking a higher education do not fit the prototype of a traditional student, concludes a broad analysis of student outcomes released on Thursday by the American Council on Education.
The report, “With College Degree in Hand: Analysis of Racial Minority Graduates and Their Lives After College,” is the third in a series of ACE reports on diversity and inclusion in higher education. It explores a range of student outcomes broken down by racial and ethnic categories, and also examines recent graduates’ performance in the job market and pursuit of advanced degrees. The report says that graduates were predominantly white students who tended to be young, unmarried, childless, and dependent on their parents while in college.
Without eradicating barriers for minority students, the report says, “traditional students will continue to dominate the new college-graduate pool while other students will remain on the sidelines by not graduating or not seeking education beyond sub-baccalaureate credentials. With postsecondary student demographics increasingly diverging from the traditional profile, the future of higher education essentially depends on its ability to resolve the chronic gap between the incoming and the graduating cohort of students.” The full report can be found on the council’s Web site.